By Matt Bullin
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has remained non-commital about Daniel Sturridge’s chances of remaining at Liverpool next season as speculation continues to mount about his future.
The 25-time England International returned from injury and came on as a substitute for the Reds as they came from behind to beat Stoke at the bet365 Stadium last time out.
Jon Walters headed the Potters into the lead before the break, while Brazilian duo Roberto Firmino and Philippe Coutinho netted in the second period to hand Liverpool all three points.
Sturridge has played just 565 minutes of football in the Premier League this season and has started only five games in an injury-blighted season.
Overall this campaign Sturridge has six goals and three assists in 22 league and cup appearances.
The rise of Divock Origi and Klopp’s preference of Firmino up top has led many, including Ian Wright, to believe that Sturridge’s exit is inevitable.
However, when asked about Sturridge’s future in his latest press conference, as quoted by the Daily Mirror, Klopp’s responses were cagey: “It was not an easy season so far but there are still six games to go and [Sturridge] is back. I’m happy about this.
“We plan different things, like transfers, as you can imagine. But who will leave we have never thought about it.”
These typically cryptic comments from the German do not shed much light on the forward’s future, but Liverpool fans will hope that he can return to fitness or form, otherwise they will want the club to cash in before his value falls any further.
Football Insider verdict:
It doesn’t take a football genius to realise that Sturridge’s time at Anfield is coming to an end. The striker has talent – and Klopp has acknowledged that in the past – but even if he could remain fit for an entire season it’s doubtful whether he’d fit in with the Klopp way of playing. As it is, he remains plagued by injury and on the sidelines, as the summer looms. He’s good enough to walk into pretty much any Premier League team outside of the top four, but the big question is who’s going to be willing to take a big financial risk that he can put in enough games to repay his new club? West Ham would love a 20-goal-a-season striker but they’ve had their own issues with Andy Carroll. Do they want another crocked striker on their books?
In other Liverpool news, this Liverpool duo are sidelined for the Reds’ clash with West Brom.